Please say HELLO to our First ALLIGATOR. His head is about 14 inches long, making him about 5 feet long...a youngster by local standards. I was standing above him, about 6 feet away looking down into his Bayou from US 190.
Starting out this morning, it was still dark. Last evening, walked until nearly dark, just beating the black clouds and thunder which passed overhead but did not rain on SPIA. Driving East on US 190, was surprised at how close we were to the town of COVINGTON, LOUISIANA, a major intersection for US 190 as well as being the Northern Terminus of the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway from NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA, about 15 miles South West across the Lake.
I had walked to within two miles of down town COVINGTON last night; so this morning, we drove to the South side of COVINGTON, filled up SPIA's gas tank, and started walking on US 190 again. Walked 12 miles. The roadway was with a wide Berm, but it was not graded and I twisted my feet more than a few times...luckily, no permanent damage.
Looking back into the swamp from our First Alligator is this dark Bayou leading to Lake Pontchartrain, only a mile or so away - could not see the lake through the trees.
Months ago in Oregon, we chatted with a fellow who reconditioned Appliances...told us business was booming because folks could not afford "new" appliances. So, here we find them again, nearly 3,000 miles away from Oregon.
These trees, in the town of LACOMBE, LOUISIANA, were particularly beautiful Weeping Willow.
Our first French Name Restaurant: LA PROVENCE.
Walking out earlier this morning, I noticed this man setting up a table with a box labeled "SHRIMP". On the way back, he was still there, together with this lady.
Please say HELLO to Harold, and his Daughter, Sylvia.
Harold is an 80 year old Shrimper Fisherman. His Shrimp Boat sits on a trailer behind his house. Says he has to chase the Alligators out of the way to launch his boat into the Gulf of Mexico.
Harold, Sylvia and I chatted for over 1/2 hour about many subjects, from immune system, to being sent out to cut a "better" switch for Grandma to whip our butts, to God, and the increasing occurrence of Earth's storms.
We made no decisions that we felt would change anything, but was fun to talk about them with your Peer.
Harold's Shrimp. These are 16-20 White Shrimp. 16 - 20 is how many you get in a pound.
In the town of LACOMBE, LOUISIANA, there are many VERY large Cypress Trees. This one grows in the middle of the street. Vehicles must swerve around it to drive by.
A companion Cypress to the one in the center of the street - seen in the background.
An up close look at the foot-long moss hanging from the tree. I could not tell is the moss is an actual part of the tree, or if it is a separate plant.
I nearly stepped on this 3 - inch Cricket while it was crossing the street. Got his picture, but it is a bit fuzzy...should have set a higher film speed.
LACOMBE BAYOU. This is a river which is navigable to and beyond the town of LACOMBE. It rises out of Lake Pontchartrain and runs North East. The bridge I am standing on is concrete, but has complex mechanisms to "rotate" the center of the bridge to allow boats to pass. The wooden walls are guides for the boats to keep them in the center of the bridge span while passing through.
One sees such a mechanism on many Rail Road Bridges throughout the United States...but never saw it applied before to a concrete bridge.
LACOMBE BAYOU, looking upstream from the bridge.
Moved SPIA two times to walk today. The second leg was for 12 miles also in blistering heat and nearly unbearable humidity. At 1:30 pm (local time), I asked for directions to the nearest RV Park. I simply could not walk further today.
Was surprised to be told that the State of Louisiana had an RV Park inside the FONTAINBLEAU STATE PARK, which I had walked past earlier... It was 18 miles back up US 190, so I turned SPIA around and drove back to the Park. So glad we did. The park is one of the top two or three quality State Parks I have seen for RVs.
SPIA has a shady spot 200 feet from laundry and showers...and with electricity, we can run SPIAs Air Conditioner...am all set for a blissful sleep in a couple hours.
Say Goodbye to our First Alligator. We are promised to see many many more.
DAILY REPORT: Walked 24 miles today.
SEE YOUR IMPACT.ORG: Credit 24 miles @ $0.02 = $0.44 for the day.
Will take a walk down to the beach of Lake Pontchartrain in a few minutes...1 hour till dark; take a nice hot shower - where I will rinse out my hand-laundry of this morning - enjoy a cold beer as the Sun goes down - and sleep sleep sleep in a cool SPIA...the A/C will run all night !!!
In the morning, will empty out SPIA's "black" water, and drive to and beyond the town of SLIDELL, LOUISIANA - to which I walked earlier today. Tomorrow, we should reach the Mississippi River Delta where it empties into the Gulf of Mexico. We will then switch to US 90, leaving US 190 behind, cross over the Mississippi River Bridge and enter the State of Mississippi. Next large town: BILOXI, MISSISSIPPI...a 4 - 5 day walk directly along the coastal waters of the Gulf of Mexico...Have never been there, so will be exciting for me.
We are certain to see many alligators, perhaps some snakes, and many seaside shanties offering delicacies of the sea...and listen to - and take in the aromas of - the warm waters of the Gulf.
Perhaps I can wrangle a short "shrimping" trip on a local shrimp boat
"Shrimp Boats are a-coming...there'l be dance'n tonight...